Somerled-D

Heroes are not born, but made.

Definition/Summary:

Somerled

  • 12th century “King of the Isles”
  • Mythic warlord who became a Celtic hero credited with driving the Vikings out of Scotland, yet it was later discovered he was actually a descendant of a Norseman
  • Overthrew the ruthless Norse ruler Godfrey the Black & became King of Man
  • With a organized coup he overthrew a ruthless Norse ruler Godfrey the Black and became King of the Isles aka King of Man
  • After a fierce naval battle Godfrey was defeated and Somerled took control of the lands
  • He is Regarded as a significant figure in 12th-century Scottish and Manx history and has been proclaimed as a patrilineal ancestor by several Scottish clans
  • However recent genetic studies suggest that Somerled has hundreds of thousands of descendants and origins in Scandinavia
  • Research by a leading DNA expert shows his lineage traced back to that of the same Vikings he sought to rid the land of
  • Many of Somerled’s origins are hidden in myths and obscured.
  • Traditionally imagined as a Celtic hero, who vanquished Viking foes and fostered a Gaelic renaissance, research later revealed that Somerled belonged to, the same Norse-Gaelic blood line and culture he conquered
  • Somerled’s wanted to expand his territories and power onto the west coast of the Scottish mainland
  • This lead to his violent death
  • In 1164 Somerled had been campaigning in Argyll in a bid to expand his territory, so he decided to attack Renfew and the Scots King, Malcolm IV moved to resist the invasion but while he was preparing for the battle to come, Somerled was betrayed and murdered by his own nephew
  • Upon his death, Somerled’s kingdom was divided between three sons – each of which would form their own clans. The most notable of which to emerge from this period was clan Donald
  • This gives rise to the people’s pride who saw themselves as direct descendants of the great Somerled

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